Welcome back to our mental health series Parenting And Mental Health: What it feels like, today were talking to Cas to see how she deals wi...

Parenting And Mental Health: What it feels like: Part 3

By April 12, 2018

Welcome back to our mental health series Parenting And Mental Health: What it feels like, today were talking to Cas to see how she deals with her mental health while parenting.

I'm Cas, I'm a mum of one (8 year old boy) and I've been writing MummyNeverSleeps for nearly 6 years. I predominantly write about my journey through motherhood while tackling my mental health. Two years ago I was diagnosed with a personality disorder called Cyclothymia (very similar to Bipolar Disorder). 

1) When did you realize you had a mental health problem?
 I think I was 11 or 12 when I first experienced depression but didn't really know what was happening at the time. It's with hindsight that I recognised what was wrong when I was around 18 and it was only when I fell pregnant a few years later that I sought help from my GP and was immediately put on antidepressants. When I was 27 I was admitted to a mental health unit following a bout of being suicidal - it was then suggested I could be dealing with a personality disorder rather than depression. 

2) How did you deal with it?
I didn't. I was suicidal, I self-harmed and I hid away. After being incorrectly diagnosed and treated for so long, all I felt was relief when I was diagnosed with something that made sense, it's taken a long time to find the correct mix of medication and dosage but I've been mostly stable for a year now. 

3)How does your mental health affect your parenting? 
Some days I don't feel I can do very much at all, and others I want to do everything. I have to find a balance every day and tackle things in little chunks, otherwise, I won't know when to stop. I also find I'm highly sensitive to my son's emotions and what's going on in his life. 

4)Do your children notice when you have a bad day? 
Absolutely. My son's very perceptive when it comes to my moods, if he's picked up me feeling a bit low, he'll overcompensate and try to make me smile and distract me. 

- How does that make you feel?
I feel incredibly guilty that he's so young and already knows that mummy can feel sad for no reason and he has no way of finding a solution. 

-How do you deal with it? 
I'm not sure I do, mum guilt is pretty formidable! 

5)How does your mental health affect your daily life?
My medication makes me very tired and drowsy, I have to go to bed at a set time as staying up late is a sign I'm getting unwell and hypomanic. I make a lot of lists so I have set boundaries and don't go overboard around the house. Lists also help when I feel overwhelmed and as if there's too much going on in my head. 

6)If you have, how did you get over your mental health problems? 
Cyclothymia is chronic unfortunately and can lead to Bipolar disorder. It's something I need to deal with and take medication for the foreseeable future, if not forever. It's just something I need to learn to manage rather than cure. 

If you enjoyed reading Cas's story you can find here on her social channels:
Blog: http://mummyneversleeps.co.uk/ 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mummyneversleeps/ 
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mummynevasleeps 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mummyneversleeps/

You can check out previous parts of our mental health series Here and Here :D Watch out for more soon!

Much Love

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